Saturday, August 07, 2010

Suicide, Cynicism and Gender: Further Reading

The respective roles of men and women in suicide bombings is one I've written about frequently. These are just a few of the articles and essays since 2005 that touch on the question:

Al Qaeda’s Pandora
Osama bin Laden's 17-year-old daughter is trying to get out of Iran. Her story could expose ties between the mullahs and her father's terror networks.

Divorce, Jihadi Style
What role do women play in Al Qaeda? A few are suicide bombers; others may encourage their men to become one.

The New TNT
New studies of suicide bombers say that most have three important qualities in common: testosterone, a narrative fantasy, and a desire to make theater.

The Suicide Solution
Mohammad Sidique Khan's voice-from-the-grave video got me thinking the other day. Most Americans were focused on the disaster in New Orleans, that city betrayed by the cupidity of shortsighted politicians, flooded with pestilence, plagued by chaos. Al-Jazeera's broadcast on Thursday of the Yorkshire-accented musings of this Muslim fanatic who blew himself up in the London Underground two months ago in the attack that killed 52 innocents, seemed weirdly irrelevant given the scope of the national tragedy that now faces the United States

Women of Al Qaeda
Jihad used to have a gender: male. The men who dominated the movement exploited traditional attitudes about sex and the sexes to build their ranks. They still do that, but with a difference: even Al Qaeda is using female killers now, and goading the men.

Also note the foreword I wrote to Barbara Victor's "Army of Roses" in 2004:

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